Marshall Flats
The proposed development at 1515-1525 Marshall Ave.

Three vacant houses at 1515, 1519 and 1525 Marshall Ave. would make way for a pair of three-story apartment buildings if plans presented by developer Charlie Burdick and architect Wynne Yelland on April 19 to the Union Park District Council (UPDC) Land Use Committee come to fruition.

The three lots are located just west of a commercial property that will be soon replaced by a 41/2-story, 60-unit apartment building. The lots are zoned for Traditional Neighborhoods 3, so they meet the height limit. At this point the only potential variance is to meet the definition of front-facing entries. Yelland’s design has the buildings facing a courtyard rather than Marshall.

If all goes as planned, groundbreaking would be in June and the new buildings would be complete in early 2022. Each of the two buildings would have 12 one-bedroom apartments ranging from 500-600 square feet. Burdick said his target market for tenants is young professionals. Rents would be at 80 percent of the Twin Cities area’s median income, or around $1,550 per month.

The buildings would have 10 rear parking spaces along the Marshall-Iglehart alley. Bike parking would be inside the buildings.

Most of the UPDC committee’s questions centered on motor vehicle and bicycle access as well as the buildings’ design. Yelland said the buildings would have a contemporary design. Exterior materials could include fiberboard or Hardie board, metal and wood.

If the project goes ahead it will be the ninth new multifamily building planned along Marshall since zoning changes were adopted in 2018 between Pascal Street and Mississippi River Boulevard. Two buildings are completed, another is under construction and the rest have gotten city approvals.

Marshall and Finn project approved

The latest project to win approval is Marshall Lofts at the northeast corner of Marshall Avenue and Finn Street. The Saint Paul Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA) on April 19 approved two of three variances for the project. Developer Jon Schwartzman plans to replace four homes at 2097-2115 Marshall with nine loft-style townhouses facing Marshall and a 50-unit apartment building along the alley.


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There were 73 parking spaces required and 61 were unanimously approved by the BZA. There was more debate over two variances for balconies on the apartment building. The board was initially deadlocked, but reconsidered and approved a rear-yard setback of 20 feet instead of the required 25 feet for balconies on the north side of the apartments.

However, the BZA rejected a third variance for balconies on the east side of the building. A 9-foot side-yard setback was required there and four feet were proposed.

— Jane McClure


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